The wild popularity of Nintendo’s Classic NES Mini proves, if nothing else, that the desire for retro gaming experiences is still strong. Trumping six months’ worth of Wii U sales figures in the first week after its November release, the Classic NES Mini is in hot demand. So hot, it’s still sold out at retailers worldwide. With the price tag a meager $60, the same amount as a single brand new Wii U title, it’s no wonder.
Packed with 30 old school Nintendo hits, the Classic NES Mini is a palm-sized trip down memory lane for gamers of all ages. Unlike many of the previous Virtual Console ‘ports’ to systems like the Wii and Wii U, the game graphics of the Classic NES Mini are exactly that – classic. This time around, Nintendo manages to keep the original vibrancy of the games and enhance them with new HDMI capabilities, simultaneously.
Further evoking the feelings of gaming past, the Classic NES Mini has multiple display modes: a standard HD mode; a full screen 4:3 aspect ratio mode; a ‘CRT’ mode for emulating older television sets; and a ‘Pixel Perfect’ mode that provides the truest 8-bit gaming experience.
The games available on the Classic NES Mini span all of Nintendo’s genres, and include gems like the first and second Castlevania, Ninja Gaiden, Donkey Kong, and Galaga. And if those doses of nostalgia weren’t enough, Nintendo also tapped into its previous perfection by issuing the Classic NES Mini controller in its ‘original’ full size, though it isn’t wireless (and has a woefully short cable).
The controller is also Wii / Wii U compatible and that is especially heartening, since the purchase of a second Classic NES Mini controller is available, and likely, for many owners. Half of the available Classic NES Mini games have a two-player mode, incentivizing the extra $10 splurge. (But let’s be honest: a playthrough of Dr. Mario or TECMO BOWL isn’t complete without a friend to compete against, right?)
Lastly, the Classic NES Mini has four “suspend point” slots per game, so that games can be quickly saved anytime by pressing the console’s ‘Reset’ button. A “suspend point” can also be locked, to prevent an accidental overwrite. Additionally, the Classic NES Mini auto-saves games and shuts down after an hour of inactivity.
Nintendo hasn’t expressed any plans to expand the games that are playable on the Classic NES Mini though, if sales numbers and consumer demand are of any indication, there’s a good chance we’ll see another iteration in the future.
In the meantime, here’s hoping Nintendo puts out a fresh batch of Classic NES Minis for us soon.
Nintendo Entertainment System: NES Classic Edition
6 used from $149.99
- The Nintendo Entertainment System: NES Classic Edition has the original look and feel, only smaller, sleeker, and pre-loaded with 30 games
- The pre-installed games include: Super Mario Bros., Donkey Kong, The Legend of Zelda, PAC-MAN, Dr. Mario, Mega Man, Final Fantasy, and dozens more
- Includes a standard HDMI cable
- Comes with one old-school, grey-colored NES Classic Controller and an AC adapter
- Also compatible with Classic Controller and Classic Controller Pro. Additional NES Classic Controllers will be sold separately